» Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]


 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]


 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
Halcyon Digest
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Fat Possum
The Pains of Being Pure at Heart
The Pains of Being Pure at Heart

Rating: 8/10 ?

July 28, 2009
Between their quiet vocal delivery and dreamy, largely major-key constructions, Brooklyn buzz band the Pains of Being Pure at Heart, have rightly earned their twee moniker. Even their label name, Slumberland, sounds fittingly adorable. Be not mistaken: the quartet's highly praised, eponymous debut is best suited for navel-gazing post-punks two decades removed rather than millennial teenagers.

Coming-of-age tales usually lead to shark-jumping in indie-rock, yet there is something refreshing about The Pains of Being Pure at Heart's sophisticated take on hormone-driven teenhood. Evidently, TPOBPAH has done their homework, with frontman Kip Berman, sounding like a bratty Jim Reid, and drummer Kurt Feldman taking cues from My Bloody Valentine's swirling backbeat . The foursome hits their stride by hovering around 120 bpm, radiating fuzz that straddles the line between '80s shoegaze and non-threatening '00s noise-pop.

Poised behind the keyboard, Peggy Wang backs Berman's nonchalant choruses with appropriate shy-girl harmonies. But for every rose-colored "Come Saturday" and tender "Stay Alive," they pull off a cheeky bastard like "Young Adult Friction," an ode to misconduct among the library microfiche. And per their drumless opener, "Contender," it seems TPOBPAH also has a mean streak, with Berman's subtle putdowns ("I heard your same old tune/ singing city sins like you were the first one") even more biting when sung so sweetly. For a band noted for their precious aesthetics, their secretly aggressive riffs and jabbing zings are the most essential facets to their authenticity.

Reviewed by Lara Longo
Lara Longo is a writer and photographer from Brooklyn, NY. In 1989, Lara received her first CD player and album, Appetite for Destruction; ever since, music is something she has fawned over, hated on, and played loudly. Her work has also appeared in Relix and New York Cool. Lara’s interests include sharks, European television, and the Hammond B3 organ.

See other reviews by Lara Longo



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